Edguy – Always the Joker(s)

Saturday, 30th March 2013

Blistering.com: I’ve always thought it was a really cool thing that you’ve maintained your sense of humor from album to album.

Sammet: I think we don’t do it on purpose. It’s a part of being honest and natural with ourselves. I think it’s very important to maintain a sense of humor or a tongue-in-cheek attitude or you’d go crazy. We’d become alcoholics because this business is so stupid and ridiculous and there’s so much ridiculousness in the whole music circus. You have to maintain your humor and I really don’t understand why some bands don’t show their sense of humor. Let’s face it: There are bands who are doing stupid things and are taking themselves too seriously, but nobody else does.

We play the kind of music where you have to sing songs about Odin, where grown-up men pretend they’re Conan the Barbarian, wearing silly loin cloths and sing about raping women, behaving like…some primal creatures and making primal noises, and shaking the heads and banging their heads [laughs]. It doesn’t make sense from an evolutionary point of view because we should be quite a few steps further. And still we enjoy doing all of those primal things and behaving in such a primal way. I don’t know…somebody takes it seriously. But if you’re past your 40th birthday, I don’t see any reason why I should take it seriously. I think I take the world hunger problem[as] a very serious manner, but c’mon, this is rock ‘n’ roll, why would we take it seriously?

Blistering.com: I think some of those bands don’t realize what they’re doing, don’t you?

Sammet: I’ve always admired bands that were honest and stood up for they believed in. Even at an early age, I knew there was this humorous side to Twisted Sister. I always liked the humorous side to a band like Manowar, but I didn’t know they took themselves seriously. Like a band like early Van Halen. They balanced out so well. They played music that was seriously great and they were geniuses, but at the same time, they had a good laugh about themselves and so did the rest of the world. That was a great attitude. It was so innocent. It was not so dead-serious. In today’s heavy metal scene, the book of rules is so serious. There are more rules in heavy metal than the Catholic Church. I don’t understand why, because at the end of the day, it’s all about fun.

Blistering.com: Let’s try something different and take each of your studio albums and you respond with the first thing that comes to mind. Let’s start with Kingdom of Madness.

Sammet: Bad sound [laughs]. I wondered why we paid so much money for such a bad production. We shouldn’t have had a drummer do the production.

Blistering.com: Vain Glory Opera

Sammet: Our breakthrough. Our breakthrough because of us, but also Hansi Kurssh (Blind Guardian) and Timo Tolkki of Stratovarius.

Blistering.com: Theater of Salvation

Sammet: It’s over-ambitious. We tried to multiply everything on Vain Glory Opera and did it too much. Great playing, but to me, it seems a little over-ambitious. We tried to make everything more bigger and epic.

Blistering.com: Savage Poetry

Sammet: Vocal acrobatics. I tried to make clear to everybody that I could make dogs run away.

Blistering.com: How about Mandrake?

Sammet: It’s hard to say. I really love this album. The first mature Edguy album in a good way. I think it was the logical next step from Theater of Salvation. We were getting more diverse and less polished.

Blistering.com: Hellfire Club.

Sammet: Great songs; a great album. The next step of Mandrake [laughs].

Blistering.com: Rocket Ride, which some think is your first step away from power metal.

Sammet: I think it’s power metal; very diverse, very colorful. The cover would make you expect it to be too colorful. To me, it was a big, big step. It was the first album with Sascha Paeth onboard and I thought it was better than anything we’ve done before. Of course, people will crucify me for that [laughs]. But I can judge because I’ve been there when all the other albums have been produced, so you had better believe me [laughs].

Blistering.com: Tinnitus Sanctus

Sammet: A great continuation of Rocket Ride. A great album, overall, a little too dark.

Blistering.com: Let’s talk about North America for a second. I know you’ve done some headlining runs before, so is that going to be the approach for Age of the Joker?

Sammet: I don’t even know what we’re doing, because we have a proposal with another band, but I’m not going to say. We could go out and do more clubs, which is probably what we’d do with another band anyway, unless it was the Scorpions, which is not the case [laughs]. We are ready and prepared to the hard work again in the US and Canada. We’re willing to do it. We like to tour the world and play our music and even getting paid to do it.

The attitudes of the people in North America are much different than Europe. People take things less seriously. People are always in a good mood, like you.

Blistering.com: Oh, I try Tobi.

Sammet: [laughs] People are just looking to go to a good show. I really like that. What I don’t like is the conditions we have to play as a club band. We were a club band in Germany around Mandrake and we played the same size clubs then as we do now in the U.S. Those clubs are in better conditions in Europe than they are in North America. Plus, the distances aren’t as long in Europe, so that makes it easier to tour Europe as a club. But I enjoy being in North America. I’m looking forward to going back.


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